Monday, February 9, 2009

Quick Hits on a Monday

Here are a few quick hits from the Big South to keep you thinking until we get a chance to dig deeper into some topics...

--the VMI/Radford race in men's basketball this year has to have your blood pumping...they're tied for the lead at 10-2 going into Monday's games (in which both teams are home against teams with losing records) and it's less than two weeks before they meet again: 2/21 in Lexington, exactly a month after the Keydets beat the Highlanders by 15 in Radford...VMI is 19-4 overall, Radford 13-10.

--the competitive battle for home games in the men's hoops tourney continues--one game separates four teams, as Liberty (8-5), UNCA (7-6), and GWU (7-6) are essentially three teams fighting for two positions (noting that transitioning PC will not be participating in the tournament, even with its 7-5 record in the thick of things in the standings). All that being said, it's not quite too late for Winthrop or Coastal to surge into or past that group...but it would be a very tall order for CSU or HPU to pull off a feat like that at this stage.

--how long can Liberty keep it going in women's hoops? The Lady Flames are burning it up at 8-0 so far--they've won 11 in a row overall and sit at 14-7 on the year. Meanwhile, High Point's women are still hanging in striking distance at 7-2.

--and if you thought the men's race was tight, try this: ONE game separating FIVE teams in the women's standings--three teams at 5-4 (RU/UNCA/WU) and two at 4-5 (CCU/GWU).

--PC takes an out-of-conference shot at breaking its WBB losing streak tonight, with Allen coming into Clinton...Presbyterian is 0-9 in the Big South, and only 2-18 overall with 15 consecutive losses.

--as alluded to on Friday, softball has launched its season. Most Big South schools are traveling this time of year, but Charleston Southern played at home and the Lady Bucs put on a show against NC Central. CSU swept the three-game series and outscored NCCU 29-3 in those games, which included a five-inning gem from sophomore Sondra Vetter: a perfect game in the opener of Saturday's doubleheader!

--Saturday marked the Big South's 4th Annual College Quiz Bowl event, the day that the athletic institutions of the Big South bring out their academic talent for a showdown. This year the competition hit the campus of Gardner-Webb University--and for the first time in the event's history, three-time winner Liberty did NOT come away with the victory. UNC Asheville demonstrated that its team brought the most knowledge to the table for the day in sweeping the field over the round-robin matches. The UNCA group finished 6-0, dealing closest challenger VMI (5-1) its only loss on the way to the Bulldogs' championship.

--those of you following the great SHOUT computer saga of 2009 will be happy to know the new model is in place and hopefully tomorrow it will be 100% engaged in everything I need...that's after a month of limping along in my office with an interim replacement. Hooray!

Okay, gotta run--SHOUT, out!

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